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Rum Review: Traveller's 1 (One) Barrel Rum

 
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How do you rate Traveller's 1 (One) Barrel Rum (five is best)?
5
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4
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3
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2
50%
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1
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Total Votes : 2

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Capn Jimbo
Rum Evangelisti and Compleat Idiot


Joined: 11 Dec 2006
Posts: 3443
Location: Paradise: Fort Lauderdale of course...

PostPosted: Sat Nov 22, 2008 2:32 pm    Post subject: Rum Review: Traveller's 1 (One) Barrel Rum Reply with quote

Traveller's 1 (One) Barrel Rum: "Maple flavored pancake syrup"


Very recently Sue Sea and I had the opportunity to finally taste and review the surprising new Zaya Gran Reserva (Trinidad) which led to a notable split decision. Overall, however the Zaya was well worth its purchase. 1 Barrel is a horse of another flavor, lol...

If there was ever a rum that deserves to be labeled "flavored", 1 Barrel is it. Sue Sea and I will not soon forget Richard Seale's Miami appearance and demonstration wherein he phonied up a young, continuous distilled rum with additives known only to him, and which accordingly fooled some very experienced tasters into thinking it was a well aged, pot stilled, molasses-based rum.

A masterful deception. 1 Barrel is quite the opposite as you shall see - but first, the reviews:

Sue Sea:

Quote:
1 Barrel comes in a plain Jane, screw top bottle. The label is amateurish, with faux gold leaf lettering, "1 Barrel", set against an elementary school art class barrel. The rum itself is a lighter gold - the overall impression is plain and fails to set an attractive tone.

Still, there are some who may prefer such an unpolished presentation.

1 Barrel presents with a strong maple aroma, with tones of butterscotch, honey and caramel. Like a truck stop pecan pie, or what we used to call (artificial) maple-flavored "bear claws". There is a background of reed that works to offset the maple a bit. Still, the maple is dominant and carried throughout the tasting. The body is smooth and coating, and the taste is entirely consistent. The palate opens with maple candy sweetness, with clove emerging mid-palate. The finish is longer than Zaya - I'd call it a medium finish, with both clove and white pepper, quite warming.

Overall, I found 1 Barrel to be of one primary, overpowering note - of artificial and overdone maple flavoring. I believe this is a flavored rum that should be so promoted, and should compete as such.


Me:

I can't really disagree with Sue Sea (and her talented waiter son - who has a keen palate as well). 1 Barrel's color is a clear but not lustrous light gold with scary, thick sugar legs. Its aroma is clear, strong and unmistakeable: a pungent, very deep maple-flavored syrup, with tones of almond and over a background of sour leather. The taste is sadly consistent with an overpowering maple flavor, leading to a very warming hot, peppery finish.

I must be honest about Traveller's 1 Barrel. It is the lowest rated rum we have ever reviewed. However, 1 Barrel is not without merit - I found it makes a lovely drizzled additive when cooking breakfast sausage and is cheaper than authentic maple syrup.

Traveller's 1 Barrel is an excellent example of the Twiggie syndrome. No doubt a young inexpensive rum, minimally aged (just one year), and doctored with tanks of artificial maple/almond-like flavoring, et al. Not surprising, really.

What is surprising is that there are actually rum drinkers (and "competitions"!) who like and promote this doctored rum in the non-flavored "aged rum" division! Shame on you.

Rating (10 is best): 4.
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Last edited by Capn Jimbo on Tue Jul 20, 2010 1:49 pm; edited 8 times in total
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Capn Jimbo
Rum Evangelisti and Compleat Idiot


Joined: 11 Dec 2006
Posts: 3443
Location: Paradise: Fort Lauderdale of course...

PostPosted: Sun Nov 23, 2008 7:04 am    Post subject: The poster toilet bowl cleaner... Reply with quote

Twiggie's Poster Rum...

I'm gonna have to do it. Nominate Traveller's 1 Barrel for the poster rum for the Twiggie's Tye Dye Rum section. It possesses all of the key characteristics:

1. Young,
2. Continuously distilled,
3. Heavily flavored, and...
4. Well marketed.

Let's cover these in order. Traveller's 1 Barrel is a mere 1 year old, "aged" for all of 12 months. Although the importer likes to boast of its "multiple distillations", he was foolish enough to also post a picture boasting of 1 Barrel's "three-column continuous still". Oops. And our review ought to make clear the heavy, artificial and overpowering doctoring of this inexpensive young rum.

As for marketing, let's first have a good laugh at some of the marketing copy:

From the importer:

Quote:
"This fine imported rum has its roots in tropical Belize. It is very aromatic rum with lots of flavor. Some described the rum's nose as floral because of the aroma reminds of hibiscus and papaya fruit. If tasted straight, One Barrel Rum is quite smooth without a bite to it, followed with a slight taste of molasses. The molasses flavor isn't overpowering, but nicely sitting in the background."


From the company website:

Quote:
"Aged to perfection in Kentucky Oak Barrels for 12 months, One Barrel acquires a medium-body consistency characterized by smooth and distinct flavors. A softly sweet taste complements its bouquet of aromas to create an unforgettably palatable finish."


Some scattered tasting notes:

Quote:
Unknown: "Subtle nutty aromas; flavors of walnut, hazelnut, butter, caramel and a hint of apricots; long, lingering finish of nuttiness."

Burr's Gifted Rum Guide: "Bright golden color and distinct aroma of butterscotch and a hint of maple syrup."

A parroting retailer: "This fine imported rum has its roots in tropical Belize. It is very aromatic rum with lots of flavor. Some described the rum's nose as floral because of the aroma reminds of hibiscus and papaya fruit. (Sound familiar?)


Subtle? Hint of maple syrup? Softly sweet? Aromas of hibiscus and papaya? Give me an flaming break. This is marketing at it's best/worst. And the retailers and commercial "guides" all parrot the hype.

What is more disappointing are the two lone "gold" awards given (and I mean given) to this faux flavored rum. You just can't believe this pandering patter:

Quote:
Judge’s Notes: “Subtle nutty aromas; flavors of walnut, hazelnut, butter, caramel and a hint of apricots; long, lingering finish of nuttiness”.

Dowd: "complex nose; layered flavors; pleasantly lingering aftertaste".


What can we learn from this? Are "competitions" really good guides for the rest of us? I say not, and Traveller's 1 Barrel is Exhibit One.

First are the rums chosen. Preacher Ed won't even tell you what - or how many - rums are in any given category. A "gold" winner may well have been the only entry. Other competitions do better, and at list list the companies entering, and sometimes even the individual rums.

Second are the categories. Traveller's 1 Barrel ended up in either the "dark rum" or "traditional gold rum - less than 5 year" categories. What!? Which is it guys (and gal - Dori)? 1 Barrel ended up with both a gold and "best of class" competing against Cockspur 5 year and Flor de Cana 4 Year in the non-flavored, "aged rum" category. Oh my!

Give me a break! There's no way on this once green earth that this inexpensive, continuously distilled, overpoweringly flavored product should even appear at the same table with Cockspur and Flor de Cana (which are properly categorized).

How can these "competitions" expect credibility when they place this rum in any category other than "flavored or spiced rums"? Dear god, even the importer admits that 1 Barrel is concocted "Using secret family formulas, combined with multiple distillations, and unique Belizean juices and flavorings"!. Earth to promoters...

How do you spell h-y-p-o-c-r-i-s-y?

These "competitions" are entirely commercial and cannot proceed without the full cooperation of the producers. The only commercial site with any integrity is BTI (Beverage Tasting Institute) in this regard.

The others are just events designed to keep the promoters employed and attendees well sloshed...
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Capn Jimbo
Rum Evangelisti and Compleat Idiot


Joined: 11 Dec 2006
Posts: 3443
Location: Paradise: Fort Lauderdale of course...

PostPosted: Sun Nov 20, 2011 7:35 am    Post subject: Even One Barrel admits their deception... Reply with quote

Don't believe a compleat idiot. No, believe the distiller...


One Barrel just might become the poster boy for this category, for (a) producing a "rum" that is actually flavored, (b) admitting it and yet (c) still being promoted by the rum shills, and even being entered in their "competitions" in the "dark rum" category!

Don't bother reading the following quite yet, but skip ahead and come back to it if necessary:

Quote:
Source: The San Pedro Sun Visitor, Island Newspaper, Belize, 4/13/06:

"For Belize, rum symbolizes more than an alcoholic beverage; rum is a cultural phenomenon that visitors from around the world associate with the essence of the tropics. In Belize, one of the most popular rum for local or mixed drinks is the world renowned One Barrel Rum proudly created and distributed by Traveller’s Liquors. Last week, One Barrel rum was entered at the Cane Spirits Competition in Tampa, Florida where it was recognized as first among sixteen hundred worldwide competitors in the dark rum category. There were thirty-one judges who tasted the rums entered in the competition and judged them on taste, body, and finish. One Barrel has won other gold medals in the three years it has been on the international market.

One Barrel is a very aromatic rum with lots of flavor. Its “nose” has been described as “floral” specifically reminiscent of hibiscus and papaya fruit. Tasted straight, One Barrel is quite smooth without a “bite” to it. You can taste the memory of the molasses that was used to make the rum. The molasses flavor isn’t overpowering, but it is there in the background. This makes the rum mix well with juices and Colas, which are the most common mixers for rum drinks. The hint of molasses seems to “complete” the flavor of the mixers, actually improving the taste when compared to the mixer alone. People who taste One Barrel rum usually end up being One Barrel drinkers, even if they hated rum before they tried this one.

Since 1953, Traveller’s Liquors Limited has been providing Belizeans and visitors alike with a broad and unique assortment of distilled and fermented products. Founder and Patriarch of the family, Master Blender Omario Perdomo, gave the company its name because of its original success serving Traveller’s along the main route into and out of Belize City. In 1992, the company completely upgraded the distillation facility, stepping away from other distilleries which use acids to speed up the fermentation process.

Traveller’s employs high-test molasses with natural fermentation, coupled with a double-distillation method for smoother taste. Apart from the traditional distilled products like rum and vodka, Traveller’s also produces liqueurs and wines from Belizean fruits, they are the only Belizean refinery that does this.

(From this point the article speaks again to rum and One Barrel...)

Traveller’s Liquors Limited are producers of Belize’s oldest and only aged rums on the market today. Using secret family formulas combined with multiple distillations, special aging techniques and unique Belizean juices and flavorings, the Perdomo family is extremely proud to present to you an award winning collection of products to complement even the most discerning taste.

(It is difficult to interpret this paragraph as anything but a description of their rums).

The bottom line is that the clear, tan, or brown liquid you pour over ice or mix in a blender has come a long way to serve you. To appropriately honor it for its long journey, Belizeans blend rum into a variety of concoctions that celebrate the distinctive taste. The beauty of rum is that it mixes so well with different flavors that consumers of all preferences can appreciate its simplicity. One Barrel has won numerous gold medals in the “dark and light 80 proof” category at the annual International Rum Festival. One Barrel, or its aged counterpart, Prestige Premium Gold, continually surpasses other rums throughout the Caribbean in taste and quality.

Traveller’s Liquors produces seventeen varieties of rum all together. The light gold color – reflects the unfiltered content like golden stars in a galaxy. Fresh peach and sweet florals dominate the nose. The entry is silky smooth sweet butterscotch with a roasted coconut and viscous oily body followed by apple cinnamon spice in the finish. Clearly a fantastic choice and undoubtedly why this classic golden rum has won the gold medal dark rum category in the 2006 International Sugar Cane Spirits competition. One world, one choice; One Barrel!"


The article was an island puff piece written about Traveller's products. It makes clear two things:

1. Traveller's produces liqueurs and wines from "Belizean fruits".

2. Traveller's produces 17 varieties of rum, notably "One Barrel" which is produced "Using secret family formulas combined with multiple distillations, special aging techniques and unique Belizean juices and flavorings".

Please note that One Barrel, clearly a flavored product has been incorrectly entered in the dark rum category, and worse yet... has actually won awards!!

This speaks volume to the honesty of both distillers and the rum "competitions". Another terrific example: Ron Viejo de Caldas 3 Year - a cane juice rum that has been repeatedly entered by the distributors in the "aged molasses rum" category.
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 19, 2014 7:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

1 Barrel is a nasty, rough, poorly blended (if at all) married with synthetic OTT flavourings and additives "rum".

It is worse than Captain Morgan's Spiced Gold and that is saying something!

I paid £30 for this rubbish as well!
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